Beaufort is a romantic and popular tourist destination known for its history. Major festivals and arts events include the Home Water Festival, a two-week extravaganza in the middle of July; and the Shrimp Festival, celebrating the local and traditional industry, in the first weekend in October. The Beaufort Shrimp Festival has been recognized as one of the Southeast Tourism Society's Top Events.
Beaufort’s attractive location and deep connections with history and culture, make it a prime tourist location. Nearly two million visitors a year come to Beaufort and the Sea Islands of northern Beaufort County, with spring and fall seasons being peak times. The primary attractions of these visitors include golf and beach vacations, history, water sports, and local arts and crafts. As a result, Beaufort is home to many accommodation options ranging from upscale bed-and-breakfasts in the downtown area to standard motels and inns along Boundary Street. There are several dozen dining establishments in the city that cater to locals and tourists alike.
The Beaufort International Film Festival held in mid-February each year (covers the President's Day weekend) screens independent films. A Taste of Beaufort, presented by Main Street Beaufort, is held on the first Saturday in May and features 20 local restaurants, fine wines, and live music. Historic Beaufort Foundation's Fall Tour of Homes and St. Helena's Spring Tour of Homes provide glimpses into the antebellum homes on the Point and local plantations. The town is also the home of The Kazoo Museum, which opened in October 2010 and is located in the Kazoobie Kazoos Factory. Hunting Island is nearby on the Atlantic Ocean and offers some of the most beautiful beaches in the Carolina’s and is the state's most visited state park.
Area Information Beaufort, SC
•Median Age: 34.67 yr
•Median Commute Time: 17 mins
•Educational Climate*: 4
•Sales Tax: 6.0%
•Population Density: 469/sq mi
•Population Change Since 2000: -4.84%
•Closest Airport: Hilton Head
•Closest College: UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH CAROLINA-BEAUFORT
•Closest Jr. College TECHNICAL COLLEGE OF THE LOWCOUNTRY
•Median Household Income: $47,753
•Annual Residential Turnover: 0.00%
•Median Home Sales Price: $175,000
•Closest Major Sports Team: SAVANNAH SAND GNATS (A)
•Change Avg. Household Income Since 2000: 36%
The steeple of the Parish Church of St. Helena.
Beaufort has been named by some sources as one of "America's Best Art Towns", including being ranked the No. 14 Small City Arts Destination by American Style Magazine in 2008 and one of America's top 100 art towns by author John Villani in his 2005 book The 100 Best Art Towns in America: A Guide to Galleries, Museums, Festivals, Lodging and Dining. Close to 20 galleries operate within the city, with hundreds of local residents contributing to the arts scene.
The University of South Carolina Beaufort has a performing arts center which attracts regional and national acts to the community.
The Arts Council of Beaufort, Port Royal and the Sea Island Nurtures the arts via ARTworks, its 12,000-square-foot (1,100 m2) community arts center, theater, and gallery in Beaufort Town Center (2127 Boundary Street) that also includes the studios of working artists, Strings 'n Things music shop, and spaces for workshops, classes, and conferences, as well as an after-school program. The arts council promotes the arts with original theater productions, community arts grants, and a busy calendar for arts events county-wide.
Libraries And Museums:
The Beaufort area has close to 70 sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places, in addition to the downtown area being listed as a historic district. The John Mark Verdier House at 901 Bay Street is the only home in the city open year-round to the public that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Located in downtown, the Beaufort County Library serves residents of Beaufort and northern Beaufort County. Additional branches are found elsewhere in the county. The University of South Carolina Beaufort also has a campus library, located in the original Beaufort College building.
Lady's Island Marina:
Lady's Island Marina in Beaufort, SC, is known for its natural beauty, convenient location, and friendly management. They are located on the protected waters of Factory Creek, less than 1/2 mile from the Inter Costal Way. Slips are available for transient and long-term rentals. They have a DIY boaters' workshop, boaters lounge, courtesy car, loaner bikes.